According to the EC (European Commission), Brussels has implemented ambitious climate policies since 2004, one which target is to considerably reduce CO2emissions in the city (by 40 % capita by 2025). Moreover, since 2013, the Brussels Air, Climate and Energy code defines numerous ambitious new standards for the future, concerning energy performance, climate change and also air quality.
Eco-innovation & energy performance Since 2007, Brussels is deeply engaged in an “exemplary buildings” programme. This project has continually developed and grown to produce excellent results. It has already helped reduce CO2 emissions (13,000 tons per year between 2007 and 2009), it has created employment (1,250 jobs) and in 2015, every major building under constructions and renovation will have to respect very low energy standards (it is already true for public buildings).
Brussels also aims to implement a zero carbon street. The rue de la Loi, an important street in the Brussels European quarter, will be turned into a “zero carbon” area: the buildings will minimise their energy needs by complying with the passive standard and the remainder of the energy requirements will be sourced from renewable energy produced on site or elsewhere.
Waste production and management
Brussels has made significant efforts to reduce waste (20% since 2000) and to improve recycling rates (16 % in 2000 to 31 % in 2010). And they don't want to stop there: a recycling target of 50% is set for 2020.
The city also implements measures which are more restrictive than the EU legislation for specific hazardous wastes (like oil, grease, tyres or medication).
Through the use of sustainable urban transport planning, Brussels aims to encourage the use of public transport, cycling and walking, to travel in the city. This will allow, among other measures, to improve the air quality of the city. For example, one of the targets is to reduce car traffic by 20% from 2001 to 2018.
Brussels as an ideal destination
For the fourth consecutive year, the UIA (Union of International Associations) ranks Brussels, Belgium, as the No. 1 conference destination in Europe. As the international center for political activity, Brussels experienced an 11.3 percent increase in overnight stays for business travel last year. Thanks to high-speed trains, Brussels is less than two hours from Paris, London, Amsterdam and Cologne, and three hours from Frankfurt.
“Brussels will continue to invest in ideas and infrastructure to ensure that it stays ahead of the field. Outside the conferences and corridors of EU power, Brussels has maintained its local traditions and rich heritage.”
—Patrick Bontinck, VisitBrussels